TEDxLahore recently held a conference in Lahore. The TED-licensed event was organised by Irtiza Ubaid. The Lahore version of TEDx event was licensed after a gap of 6 years and was held at Beaconhouse Newlands.
The theme behind TEDxLahore 2016 was “Umeed-e-Sehar” (Hope of a New Dawn). Its title was inspired from the life stories of the speakers at the event. All of the speakers faced huge hurdles during the early stages of their careers.
The Speakers at TEDx Lahore
A total of seven speakers and two performers took the stage during the event. The event started with Rizwan Nusrat, who has an MBA in marketing with plenty of experience in his field. He currently works on marketing strategy for GRID. He pitched his views on video games, their pros and cons, and impact on the society.
Rizwan was followed by Qudsia Rahim, a BFA holder from National College of Arts and an MFA in Glass Sculpture from Alfred University. She is an academic at the NCA, curator of Zahoor-ul-Akhlaq Gallery and the Executive Director of Lahore Biennale Foundation (LBF), a non-profit aimed at engaging Arts as a medium of dialogue. Qudsia talked about arts and its use in human development.
The third speaker was Haseeb Abbasi, a 17-year-old associated with the Special Olympics of Pakistan and winner of several medals locally and internationally. He is a great speaker and official spokesperson for all intellectually disabled individuals in Pakistan, on behalf of Special Olympics. His speech on the difficulties faced by disabled people in Pakistan and the importance of moral support for such individuals was truly inspirational.
Izzat Majeed, a renowned music producer and owner of the Lahore-based Sachal Studios, was the fourth speaker. He is an inspirational figure in the field of jazz music. His speech focused on how classical and jazz music are very similar.
He was followed by Syeda Ghulam Fatima, a labour rights activist known for her efforts in eradicating bonded labour, especially in the brick kilns. She spoke about her commitment in poverty reduction and what is happening right under our eyes in the name of labour.
Gauher Aftab, CEO of CFx Comics (one of Pakistan’s pioneering digital companies that has produced illustrated and animated content for education), is the author of the internationally acclaimed ‘Paasban’ graphic novel series. His experience in fields like Financial Services, Advertising, Education, and Telecommunication has helped him develop a detailed understanding of the world. He spoke his mind on TEDx, speaking about how terrorists are being made and what brings about such extremism, and how to prevent this process.
Razi Ahmad, founder of Lahore Literary Festival, spoke about Lahore’s cultural values how people take pride in their culture. He has written for Dawn, Open Democracy, Dissent, and Huffington Post and runs a family business as well.
TED is a global foundation which aims to spread new ideas via conferences, sessions and online videos. It started in 1984, as a platform for discussions about Technology, Entertainment and Design but has grown to include a much wider spectrum of discussions in over 100 languages. TEDx is a programme which gives communities an opportunity to create their very own TED-like experience by organising TED-styled events. Events sponsored by TEDx generally consist of local speakers and individuals with some great ideas.